merci poupou

Proceeds of the Merci Poupou project will be donated to initiatives and charities supporting children and adolescents from different backgrounds and living conditions practicing sports, staying active or rehabilitating.


A tribute to the French cycling legend Raymond Poulidor, Mathieu van der Poel's grandfather.


In 2021, Mathieu van der Poel embarked on his first Tour de France, fully stepping into the footsteps of his grandfather, Poulidor. Unfortunately, Poulidor, who participated in the Tour a remarkable 50 times (14 times as a rider, 36 times as part of the Tour de France caravan), had passed away and could not witness his grandson's debut.

To honour this symbolic moment and the legacy of the iconic Poulidor, the Merci Poupou project was established. In 2021, Mathieu van der Poel and his teammates showed up on the starting podium wearing purple and yellow Alpecin-Fenix jerseys inspired by 'Mercier,' the team Poulidor raced for. These special edition jerseys were sold, with the proceeds going to various organisations and charities.

Merci Poupou has since become the charitable arm of Alpecin-Deceuninck, making annual contributions to various causes through different initiatives. Merci Poupou symbolises how sport unites people across generations, how grandparents pass on their love for sport to their grandchildren, and how lifelong memories are created. Merci Poupou aims to inspire the next generation to embrace cycling and sports in general, encouraging them to stay active.

Over the years, the funds raised have been donated to various organisations that provide opportunities for children and young adults to engage in sports (in the broadest sense), recover from injuries and accidents, and support causes like Kom op Tegen Kanker.

since 2021


Year after year, the proceeds are carefully donated to various organisations dedicated to giving children and young adults the opportunity to engage in sports in the broadest sense. This support extends not only to sports activities but also to initiatives that aid in their rehabilitation after injuries and accidents. Additionally, donations are made to charities such as Kom op Tegen Kanker (Stand Up to Cancer). In this way, we contribute to the well-being and health of our youth while supporting valuable community projects.

See all organizations and causes we have supported

The 2024 action

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On the second rest day of the Tour de France (15th July), the 8 Alpecin-Deceuninck riders will embark on a coffee ride wearing these beautiful, unique jerseys. After the ride, these jerseys, signed by the riders, will be available for purchase on the MatchWornShirt auction site. Additionally, the exclusive Merci Poupou Oakley sunglasses worn during the ride will also be auctioned off.

The auction will run from 15th July to 21st July.


Get the replica

You can purchase the replicas of these two beautiful designs from the brand Kalas. The replicas do not include numbering or illustrations. All proceeds from these sales will go directly to Merci Poupou.


For charity

We are producing 50 (referring to the number of Tour de France participations of Raymond Poulidor, both as rider and as Tour de France ambassador) unique jerseys, numbered from 1 to 50 and authentically signed by Mathieu van der Poel. Jersey number 1 is reserved for Mathieu van der Poel. Jersey number 2, along with a few others (see list), will be auctioned via MatchWornShirt. Ten jerseys (41 to 50) will be donated to various organisations and charities to auction themselves, raising funds for their causes. Would you like to nominate your organisation or charity? You can do so via the button below.


Unique T-shirt

For this initiative, we designed two exclusive T-shirts, which are available for a limited time in our online store.


Raymond Poulidor (passed away on November 13th 2019 aged 83), was one of the greatest road cyclists of the 20th century and, while never winning the Tour de France, remained the French public's most beloved.

Poulidor started in the Tour de France 14 times, finished 11 and stood on the podium in Paris eight times, but never wore the yellow jersey, even not for one a day. His grandson, Mathieu van der Poel, made up for that during his first Tour de France participation in 2021 by winning the second stage and securing the yellow jersey on Mûr-de-Bretagne.

Get to know all about Poupou

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Alpecin Deceunick Canyon Kalas